This blog post is a follow up of the previous one from yesterday The “Good news” . I recommend, that you read the previous article first, if you haven’t done so already.
After posting The “Good news” I got a little bit of feedback from Christians as well as Atheists today and I must say the reactions were all pretty positive. So to my readers who appreciate my work and especially the people who might not share my views, I wanna thank you for reading my blog and considering my points. One topic, that came up from the Christian side was “Spirituality” and I think I’ve touched on it a little bit already but I do want to address it further in this post:
Now, the first thing that needs to be addressed is what I mean by spirituality. If you mean by spirituality, that I seek and praise a higher being and have church services on Sunday and all that stuff, then I am not at all spiritual. But I do consider myself somewhat spiritual in a different sense:
I am spiritual in the sense that I drive to peace in my life. I try to find fulfillment and happieness in my life with secular means and I try to afford myself the opportunity to seek out the beauty in the world that I inhabit.
I for instance, love travelling and seeing the different cultures of this world. As I was a 9 year old little Rene, I traveled to Kenya and it was one of the greatest experiences in my life. I rode a camel, I stared a lion in the eyes (quite frightening I wouldn’t do it again), I was out in the ocean watching whales, I saw monkeys climbing through trees (in our Hotel actually) and I had just fantastic experiences. In those moments, I had multiple spiritual moments and though I still believed in a deity at that time, God had nothing to do with it and didn’t cross my mind at all. As I felt a connection with nature, with the majestic creatures that I saw (although Hippos not too much) and with the world as a whole I felt great peace. I plan to go there in the future again and to relive these experiences.
I also find great joy in architecture, in movies, in music and as a whole in the beauty that we as humans are able to create. I find great beauty in for instance in a picture of la tour Eiffel at night.
and I can be deeply moved by great music, by beautiful pieces of Art by movies or by poetry.
Another example where I as an atheist am not ashamed to admit, that I’m deeply moved and feel an indescribable sense of beauty, is when I simply look up at the stars at night and realize how far away they are, how vast and mysterious our universe is, how harsh and yet so peaceful it is and how we are a part of it the same way the universe is a part of us, because we are made up of stardust (and no, even though I find it beautiful and poetic, this is not my religion; I’ll throw all of it out the window, as soon as we have evidence to the contrary). I recommend this great video. The first time I saw it, I was deeply moved. Another thought/ question, that let’s me reflect on myself is of course, whether we are alone in this universe or whether extraterrestrial life truly does exist.
The way I see it, religion doesn’t have a monopoly on these kind of experiences and feelings. These feelings and experiences that move us, that give us pause, that make us reflect, that make us feel thankful are accessible to both theists and atheists, the way we get these though, is a different story.
Goodbye from yours truly,
Rene von Boenninghausen @Renevelation